Tuesday, January 09, 2007
When Jokes Are No Laughing Matter
How do you know it's election season in Morocco?
When it's open season on journalists.
In other words, when the government starts defending Islam against those who "damage" it. A Moroccoan magazine, Nichane, was banned and two journalists, Driss Ksikes and Sanaa Al Aji, are being tried for publishing an article in it about Moroccan society that contained jokes about Islam. The article was called ""Jokes: How Moroccans laugh at religion, sex and politics."They didn't make up the jokes; they just reported them. For that they are facing up to 5 years in jail. I guess "Little Mosque on the Prairie" (see previous post) won't be airing in Morocco anytime soon.
Oh, I tried to find the offending jokes, but unfortunately all the links to them I tried are dead.
Update: Aha! But "Philistine" is more persistent than me. He found them here and here (thank you, Remy)
I have no idea why these are offensive. I grew up hearing these kinds of jokes all the time. You know the type about so and so die and go up to heaven and God says....There is no satire here of God, or the prophets, but there is some satire of people, political groups, and politicians. Shu hal ban elli bala fakaha wala mazzeyeh?
Update: The two journalists were sentenced to 3 years probation and the magazine will be closed down for two months.